IT’S hard to know where to begin, describing the events of last weekend.

The annual conference of feminist organisation FiLiA is an incredible feat of organisation, gathering together women’s rights activists from around the globe.

Glasgow had the huge privilege of hosting this year, giving Scottish feminists an incredible opportunity to gather, network and stand in solidarity with women from as far afield as India, Afghanistan, Canada, Japan and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

It’s laughable to think that the usual rabble-rousing suspects imagined they could stop this from happening.

And as the poet Jenny Lindsay tweeted on Sunday night: “That they assume we centre them in our conversations speaks volumes [regarding] their arrogance.”

FiLiA unapologetically centres women, and in a move that some will find terribly unfashionable, encourages reasoned, informed and sometimes very robust debate among women who have faced far, far greater threats than a karaoke singer huffing and puffing in disapproval.

One would hope he and his crew would be embarrassed to know that survivors of sexual violence, domestic abuse and female genital mutilation were on the receiving end of their expletive-filled chants.

It’s safe to say that women brave enough to stand up to Iran’s “morality police” or the actual bloody Taliban were probably unmoved by the tutting of some city councillors.

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For every well-earned moment of celebration at FiLiA– a policy battle won, a facility launched, a miscarriage of justice overturned – there are countless calls to action.

Discussions that might seem niche one year can become hot topics the next.

Last autumn’s FiLiA included a disturbing presentation on sex dolls and robots – and by the summer Scotland had seen its first conviction for possession of a child-like doll.

The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction, which is the focus of one of FiLiA’s legacy projects, hit the headlines last month in the context of a high-profile child custody battle involving English actress Sophie Turner and her estranged husband, the US musician Joe Jonas.

It was slightly surreal, but fantastic, to see celebrity-watchers on TikTok genning up on the Hague Convention and grappling with legal definitions of “habitual residence”.

Expect two topics to rise up the Scottish policy agenda following this year’s FiLiA: surrogacy and sex-buying, both involving crucial questions about demand and supply.

The group Glasgow Tactical Feminists organised a rally against surrogacy on Saturday night that was met with some quizzical reactions from members of the public.

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In response to chants of “What do we want? To stop surrogacy! When do we want it? Now!” one woman shouted back “Children for mothers!”, which could be interpreted either as an endorsement or a criticism, depending on one’s definition of “mother”.

In March this year, the Law Commission of England and Wales and the Scottish Law Commission published not just a joint report but also a draft bill for a “robust new system” to govern surrogacy that they claim will work better for all involved.

One of the stated aims of reform is to dissuade UK couples from seeking surrogacy arrangements overseas, which the Commissions acknowledge “can bring a greater risk of exploitation of women and children”.

Despite those risks, there is no proposal to actually prohibit UK citizens from using such arrangements, which is surely tacit acknowledgement that demand for “altruistic” surrogates in the UK (ie, those who may be paid only expenses, not wages, for the use of their bodies) will not match demand.

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Campaign group Women’s Place UK, in its response to a consultation on the proposed reforms, said there was no evidence that the Commissions had “made any meaningful attempt to gather the views of surrogate mothers, particularly those who have regretted the experience or withdrawn from a surrogacy arrangement” and pointed to a failure to consult with women’s groups before the proposals were drafted. Does that sound familiar?

Despite this, more than half of the responses to a consultation on the reforms were opposed to most or all of the proposals and called for surrogacy to be prohibited.

Most of these were based on a template from grassroots group Nordic Model Now! – a group that campaigns for the buying of sex to be criminalised, and the selling to be decriminalised.

Opposition to the exploitation of women for sex and the exploitation of women’s reproductive capacity are closely linked.

With the news that former SNP leadership candidate Ash Regan is launching a campaign to introduce the Nordic Model approach to prostitution in Scotland, following years of inaction by the Scottish Government, we can expect these two campaigns to run parallel, and raise significant, highly emotive questions about whether anyone has the right to have sex or the right to have a child.

We can expect the “needs” and desires of men to once again be the paramount concern of the mob who try to get feminist conferences shut down.